When you operate a business, it can be all too easy to view your company’s interactions through the lens of a business owner. Taking the time to get into your customers’ shoes and break down how that same exchange transpires from their perspective is absolutely crucial to ensuring you provide a positive customer experience.
That positive customer experience is vital for any business to thrive, and doubly so for a field service business that relies on recurring customers to increase its profitability. As such, it’s important to be familiar with how customers see every step of their experience with you from beginning to end—including when they pay you for your services.
While paying for services is typically the last step in the service lifecycle, it is also among the most crucial. As the cherry on top of the customer’s experience with your field service business, the payment process can make or break the customer’s decision to entrust you with their needs in the future.
The Importance of a Smooth Payments Process
Regardless of the industry you’re in, your customers come to you for service because it makes their life easier. You would never expect a customer to pitch in and lend a hand while you’re completing a job, and the same should be true for the process of making a payment; customers shouldn’t have to jump through hoops or go out of their way to give you their money.
By ensuring you have a payments process in place that allows your customers to easily pay in the way that they prefer—whether it’s by debit or credit card, ACH payment, or autobill—you ensure that a customer’s final impression of your service business is one of ease and convenience. A clumsy or difficult payment process can leave a bad taste in a customer’s mouth even if the service provided up to that point has been positive, potentially ruining your chances of a new recurring customer.
A smooth transaction, on the other hand, puts your business at the top of the customer’s mind the next time they need your service. By focusing your payments process on the customer’s ease of use, you provide tangible evidence to show them that their satisfaction is your top priority. Of course, your customers may not know how easy the payment process can be if you don’t tell them. When service is complete, take the time to let them know what payment options you’re equipped to accept on the spot. Also be sure to let them know that they have the option to receive their invoice via email along with a direct payment link, that way they can pay when it’s convenient for them. This not only helps the customer to feel in control, but also provides you with an important opportunity to build your relationship with the customer and to showcase the ways in which you prioritize their needs.
Building Trust by Resolving Issues Right Away
Any element of your business can fall victim to the occasional error or issue, but no other step in the service process is as prone to criticism from your customers as taking payments. If you need to reschedule a service due to a booking error, a customer may be frustrated but will likely understand that errors occasionally happen. If something goes wrong that directly involves a customer’s money, though, they are more likely to have an immediate negative reaction.
Your first line of defense against these issues is choosing to work with a credible payment facilitator, effectively providing your business with the reliable service it needs to avoid many issues, as well as the tools you need to quickly identify and resolve errors when they do occur.
If you mistakenly charge a customer twice, for instance, a payment processing software that’s integrated into your existing software solution can allow you to quickly identify and verify the error before it grows into an issue that can impact your customer’s satisfaction. WorkWave Payments, for instance, provides a merchant portal and real-time transaction reports within WorkWave PestPac®, WorkWave Service™, and WorkWave PestPac Lite™ to provide the transparency you need to quickly find the source of a problem and resolve it. Additionally, handling problems quickly and efficiently reinforces how much you care about your customers’ experience, showcases how serious you are about protecting their finances, and protects your business’s reputation against any suspicions of fraud or other shady behavior that might arise if payment-related issues were allowed to go on for too long.
In the event that you’re unable to resolve an issue on your own, a major benefit of working with a trusted payment facilitator is gaining a dedicated team of support professionals who can provide you and your customers with a resolution. Whether it’s a payment issue or a software issue, having a dedicated support team means you’ll never find yourself at a loss for what to do next if you encounter a problem; you have a reliable partner guiding you, so you’re not in this alone. This, in turn, means you’ll always be able to provide your customers with a timely solution to any issue that arises and prove to them that your business is one on which they can rely.
Providing your customers with a flexible, reliable payments process ensures that your service cycle always ends on a high note. To learn more about how an integrated payments process can help you provide your customers with an exceptional service experience that brings your business more recurring revenue, explore WorkWave Payments today.